Hepatitis E

Also called HEV, Hep E

Hepatitis E is a virus that can cause damage to your liver. The condition it causes is also called hepatitis E.

Hepatitis means inflammation of the liver.

Most people will get better from hepatitis E without any medical treatment.

Hepatitis E is found all over the world. In the UK it is the most common type of short term (acute) hepatitis.

In the UK hepatitis E is usually picked up from eating undercooked meat.

After picking up hepatitis E there is an incubation period of about 2 to 6 weeks. After this it usually takes about 4 to 6 weeks for your body to get rid of the virus.

Most people will have no symptoms of hepatitis E. But it can sometimes cause more serious problems. Either for your liver or for other parts of your body. Around 1 in 20 people who pick up hepatitis E will get symptoms of liver damage.

People who already have another liver condition, are immunosuppressed, or are pregnant are at greater risk of serious illness from hepatitis E. This includes people who have had an organ transplant. For people at risk, hepatitis E can be a short (acute) but sometimes serious condition. In some cases, it can become a long-term (chronic) condition. This is most likely to happen in people who are immunosuppressed, especially after a transplant. But it is very rare.